Autumn in the Lake District

29 September 2021

As summer comes to an end, we may be saying goodbye to warm weather, and the nights may be getting longer, but there’s a lot to look forward to in the Lake District in the latter half of the year.

Not only does autumn make the landscape spectacularly vibrant as the leaves turn golden and late blooming flowers emerge, but the lakes are peaceful at this time of year. That said, there’s still so much to see and do. Here are a few of our favourite things to do whilst holidaying in the Lake District during the autumn months.


Distillery Tours and Tastings

Nothing will warm you up on a chilly afternoon quite like a glass of whisky. If you’re looking for luxury holiday cottages in the Lake District, you could do a lot worse than finding one close to the Lakes Distillery. Take a tour of their state-of-the-art facility and experience a tasting like no other. Lakes Distillery is well known throughout the country for its exquisite whisky, gin, and vodka. A tour of their beautifully renovated Victorian farmstead on the shore of Bassenthwaite Lake gives you the chance to peek behind the curtain and see how it’s all done.

Depending on your drink of choice, you can choose a tour that encompasses all the spirits Lakes Distillery crafts, a whisky-specific tour and even a whisky and chocolate pairing tour. You’ll get to explore the Still Room, learn how cask seasoning impacts the flavour and see first-hand how they create their wonderful spirits. If you still need convincing, the distillery is also home to a herd of alpacas that guests can meet and hand-feed.


Vibrant Autumn Gardens

Some of the Lake Districts finest gardens truly come alive in autumn. Many are owned and cared for by the National Trust, meaning they’re free for members to enjoy and only require a small admission fee for non-members.

Take a trip to Sizergh for crisp woodland walks, the chance to spot roe deer and pick fresh damsons. The rich, rocky gardens of this medieval estate put on a show during autumn. The Japanese maple trees turn buttery yellow and burnt orange, and the smell of the Japanese Katsura in the air will remind you of sweet toffee apples. Sizergh’s orchard boasts over sixty-five rare and unusual varieties of apple, with the harvest being used in the onsite café and other fruit donated to a local charity that makes use of surplus food.

The gardens of Acorn Bank are renowned for their herbs, fruit orchards and wildlife. Mid-September sees the arrival of both pink-footed and Greylag geese, buzzards can be spotted overhead, and if you go down to the beck, you stand a chance of seeing dippers and otters. We can offer amazing cottage with hot tubs after a wonderful walk.



Steam Railway Rides

If you want to take in the beauty of the Lake District in autumn but aren’t fond of fell walking, a ride on a steam train could be for you. There are a few steam railway attractions within the Lake District and Cumbria, all offering stunning views of the surrounding scenery.

The Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway runs from its station in Ravenglass, across the estuary, through the hills, ending up in Boot in the Eskdale Valley. The route is 7 miles long and offers seven requestable stops for you to hop off and enjoy this beautiful part of the Lake District. It’s good news if you’ve got a four-legged friend with you, as your dog can come on board too for a small fee, and there are many dog friendly cottages in the lake district, so you won’t be short of somewhere to stay.

For a shorter route, choose the Lakeside & Haverthwaite Railway, which runs for 3.5 miles between Haverthwaite village and the Lakeside Pier at the southern end of Lake Windermere.



Get Out on Windermere Lake

Wrap up warm and take a boat trip on Windermere Lake. Cruises run throughout the year and in most weather conditions, so just because the air is a bit nippy doesn’t mean you can’t get out on the water. There is no better way to experience the beauty of Windermere than from on the water itself, so head down to Bowness Pier, find out the sailing times and book your trip.

Scenery-wise on the lake, nothing beats autumn, and if you’re worried about the rain, many of the popular cruises run covered boats, so you can stay nice and dry whilst soaking in the surroundings.


Muncaster Castle’s Halloween Week

The arrival of autumn means Halloween, and all things spooky are just around the corner. There are tons of special events all over the Lake District, but for us,      Muncaster Castle steals the show. Their Halloween week features a mixture of attractions for children and adults, including a scary maze, fire juggling shows, alchemy workshops and a ghostly grotto.

You can assist with making giant carnival puppets and lanterns for the lantern parade, enjoy shadow puppet theatre in the woods and witness the spectacular twilight owl show.

If Halloween-themed fun isn’t your bag, there’s still a lot to see at Muncaster Castle. Within the castle’s grounds, you’ll find the Hawk & Owl centre, home to a diverse range of birds of prey, and the castle gardens are a joy to walk around at any time of the year.



We’ve not even begun to scratch the surface of all the fantastic things the Lake District has to offer in autumn – the best way is to get out there and discover them for yourself! You’re going to need somewhere to stay whilst you’re doing all this exploring. Whether you’re looking for holiday romantic cottages for two, Lake District hideaways with hot tubs, or Lake District golf breaks, Mill House can help and offer you a perfect dog friendly cottages in the Lake District, or further afield such as self-catering holiday cottages in France. Contact us today for more information about our luxury holiday cottages.

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